The highest consumption levels continue to be found in the developed world, in particular in the WHO European Region (EUR) and the WHO Region of the Americas (AMR).
Harm To Others
Alcohol’s harm to others is massive in the United Kingdom: More than half of Scots and three-quarters of people from North West England are harmed by another person’s alcohol use.
- 51.4% of people in Scotland and 78.7% of people in North West England had experienced harm from another person’s alcohol use. Most of these people reported multiple types of harm.
- There is a link between age and rates of harm, with younger age groups (16 to 24 and 25 to 34 year-olds) reporting greater rates of harm than older age groups.
- One in five adults have been harassed or insulted on the street by someone who has been consuming alcohol.
Almost ¾ of adults in Australia, i.e. 10 million people, are adversely affected by someone else’s alcohol use.
In Australia in 2011, there were 29,684 police-reported incidents of alcohol-related domestic violence, and that’s only in the four states and territories where data is available.
Death and disability
Nearly 88,000 people (ca. 62,000 men and 26,000 women) die from alcohol-related causes annually, making it the third leading preventable cause of death in the United States.
16.6 million adults ages 18 and older had an Alcohol Use Disorder in 2013. Only 1.3 million adults received treatment for an AUD at a specialized facility in 2013 (7.8 percent of adults who needed treatment).
Child Rights abuses
More than 10% of U.S. children live with a parent with alcohol problems, according to a 2012 study.
In the USA, more than half of all confirmed abuse reports and 75% of child deaths involve the use of alcohol or other drugs by parents.
In the European Union, there are at least 9 million children and young people growing up with parents who have an alcohol use disorder.
In Australia, over a million children (22% of all Australian children) are estimated to be affected in some way by the alcohol use of others (2008). 142,582 children were substantially affected (2008), and more than 10,000 Australian children are in the child protection system because of a carers alcohol use (2006-07).
In Japan, between up to 14% of parents abusing their children have alcohol use disorders.
Costs to society
In the United States, alcohol harm costs society $224 billion (USD), every year.
In 2002, 4,258 deaths in Canada were related to alcohol abuse, representing 1.9% of all deaths. Costs related to alcohol in Canada equaled approximately $14.6 billion (CAD) in 2002.
In the European Union, alcohol harm costs society €156 billion, every year.
Australian households spent on average $32.20 per week on alcohol, which equals nearly 2% of their total weekly household expenditure. This is higher than average expenditure on tobacco ($12.50), personal care ($24) and education ($30.60), and similar to the amount Australian households spent per week on fuel and power ($32.50).
In 2010 in Australia, the total costs of alcohol-related problems to society was estimated to be more $14 billion. Of this almost $3 billion (20.6%) were costs to the criminal justice system.
$1.7 billion (11.7%) were costs to the health care system.
$6.046 billion (42.1%) were costs to Australian productivity and $3.7 billion (25.5%) were costs associated with traffic accidents.
This estimate of total costs, however, does not incorporate the negative impacts on others ($6.8 billion as estimated by Laslett et al. 2010) associated with someone else’s alcohol use.